14 May 2013
I usually stay out of the meta discussions regarding G+ and why and how it should be used. It is many dedicated people with much knowledge about social media on G+ that share and help the newcomers to manage and find out how to use G+. Despite this, many new users often is more confused than enlightened by the information they get from superusers, evangelists and community managers, and the same questions arises: Why should I use G+? Give me a reason why? No one is following me? Where are my friends?
11 May 2013
Lately I have overheard the discussion on the issue of pinpointing what is shared in circles and that many complain about inconsistency in the type of information they receive in posts from circles made based on interest. The flow of information many of us get thrown at us, may at first look seem human impossible to handle, so thank god for computers. They help us sort and do many tasks at once, even manage our vast G+ streams. It’s time to get in control with minimal effort needed.
I shall be the first to admit that the flow of information I receive each and every day may at first glance seem overwhelming to me and anyone peeking at it over my shoulder. The flow of information is so vast that it feel like a firehose directed at a teacup. I cannot absorb it all and if I try, I will probably break my mind down to something that resemble a bowl of oatmeal porridge more than a brain. Most probably I’m far from alone feeling this way.
So what to do? The main stream flowing faster and faster as you add new people to follow, and you desperately try to sort it in to circles that will make sense to it all. Some based on interests and some based on people you find interesting for several reasons, but it still do not seem to help. People in your circles of interest man to often post stuff that is far from the topic of interest that made you make that circle. Well, guess what? People are still people and most of us has many sides to our lives and may share them out on a social.It may actually happen that a scientist at Cern share funny-gif or a post about his or hers vacation at Sunburn Beach.
So, what can you and I do to clean up this mess and get some system in this madness going on here on G+? You may have noticed the increased use of hashtags in posts lately. It is getting increasingly common for a very simple reason, sorting on topics. When applying a hashtag you set a topic on your post that not only defines it but also categorize it. Pretty neat, huh?
Google is still the worlds most powerful search engine, so use it. Search for a hashtag in the search field on top on your G+ page and get the stream for that tag. If the tag satisfy in its content you save it. You then get it as saved a search that in many aspects acts similar to a circle stream. You may also pinpoint that you want selected hash tag from a selected circle to narrow it further down and, voila, you got an amount of posted information that is manageable to a human being.
But hey! I am still following thousands of people, and even saving hash tags do not help me? I have done all this? Thats a good and valid point and it can be handled in a swift and efficient way. If you use Chrome, every dedicated G+ user should use that, then you can get extended functionality with the add-ons offered. Personally I grew fond of G+ Hashtags add-on. It gives you the possibility to favorite your hashtags, get a count of how many of the different hash tags that is in your streams and, most important of all, let you mute hashtags that is not of interest to you or you feel is spamming your streams. You get it for free from the Chrome web store here:https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/elpbjkmmckiobkfmdboeldkbijddkfgc?hl=en-US
I hope this will help you get it all sorted out giving you an even better G+ experience and let you engage more in posts that is of interests to you. +martin shervington’s post: “7 steps to creating circles and throwing them like diamonds into cyberspace”:https://plus.google.com/u/0/114918475211209783081/posts/aXxJBdsn3aH ,may also be of interest for further reading on how to get sorted and organized on G+. I will also recommend following and They both post interesting articles regarding G+ and how to enhance the experience and get what you want from it.
A while ago I wrote a piece on Google+ about why using Google+ that caught some attention. Back then Googles attempt to take on the world of social was doomed to failure by the so called social media experts, the tech press and media in general. Many didn't seem to comprehend what it was all about and the general public was lured in to believe it was Facebook but not Facebook. This was going on for quite a while and personally I felt it weird to look at this conception of what Google tried to do.
Almost 2 years down the road it still seem like many, including many tech journalists, is in denial or just don't see the elephant in the room of social media, Google. The Guardian had a an article about Facebook fatigue and how Facebook was loosing users. The writer did not mention Google and was writing some deranged stuff about a some new small social networks was threatening Facebook. Yes, it was deranged to not mention the fastest growing social network in history in my humble opinion. But then again, it doesn't really matter. I don't think Google grows because Facebook has developed in to some intrusive spam machine, I believe Google grows fast due to the fact it combines services and let people connect hassle free and let people communicate whatever they want without it being a terror to those not interested. Farmville anyone?
I believe Google managed to grow Google+ user base by reaching those with dedicated interest and those not finding what they were looking for elsewhere. Photographers were the first to get followers in huge numbers. The engineers and tech geeks found their place to reside finding like minded and discuss what they often couldn't discuss among most of their friends an family. As time passed more people realized that they could meet new people sharing their interest no matter how weird it may seem to those not sharing that interest. Combined with making it easy to control what you shared with and providing an array of integrated services like hangouts, chat, mail, docs, storage and so much more, it became a tool in everyday life anyone could benefit from.
Google+ is nearing half a billion active users and there is a steady stream signing up and visit the stream every day, making Google+ the fastest growing social network in history. Google manage to keep 50% of the total global advertising market online without the users feeling bugged by it. Google managed to do this across it services gluing it together in a package no one, not even Facebook, can match.So why is "everyone" so skeptical?
My guess is that Google have problems communicating good enough what they are doing both to the press and internet users around the globe. When surveys report a usage at 7 minutes per user versus almost 8 hours on Facebook like reported by Mashable, I actually tend to believe Google when they say that is way off the charts compared to their own data on how Google is used by its active users. I dunno how the usage is metered by those releasing the figures, but something do not seem right and that figures may be questionable. The figures also still seem to separate the services from each other. Youtube and Google+ still is measured as separate services. The reason is probably that many Youtube users has not merged their accounts yet. The question is how these statistics will look the day Google managed to merge all their services?
Why is Google so much better than other networks? I can only speak for myself here, but looking at Google as a whole with Google+ merging it all speaks for itself. If you look through all the services from Google you use in your everyday life my guess will be that most agree how much it actually contribute to productivity and communication. Unlike Facebook Google seem to understand that it is not so smart to intercept and disturb that communication by adding noise. My guess is that Google in the foreseeable future may come out as the worlds largest social network because it is suitable to all needs and situations without being intrusive. I also guess the Facebook fatigue will continue to grow as Facebook try to lag peoples communications with commercial content. I don't think that was a good idea and that they chose the easy way out to make money and not the clever one.
So why use Google+? Because it provides more services of better technical quality than any other network to date. It got most of what people really need in everyday life to communicate and create, and that is no small thing.
10 November 2012
For some time now I have wondered what to do regarding this blog. It started when My project was to create an online identity as I have stayed passive regarding main stream social media and by that what is coming up in a Google search. The blog started out in Norwegian, as that seemed proper at the time, but will from now be in English.
So why on earth change it all in to English? You are still a silly viking with a weird bacon fetish, right? Yes Im still a silly viking and I also know the bacon meme is the universal language of yumminess. In the beginning I was using social networking as a very localized service to get jobs and communicate with friends and other people living in Norway. G+ somewhat changed the game. Also the fact that visitors to this blog often use Google translate to get the content make sense is really a heartbreaker as it soes to language what prison rape could do to your ass. I really don't like the thought of that happen to my writing, no matter how silly. Also seeing that most visits to this blog is coming from outside Scandinavia made the decision an easy one
What the purpose is/was, because I frankly don't think I know anymore? From being a local channel where I just acted locally, G+ has grown to be a global playground to me. Suddenly I gained followers by the thousands, and it all got really strange but fun. Meeting many good and interesting people with interesting posts and opinions or just sharing the fun. Some even became friends in real life. I never in my wildest imagination thought that would happen. The most fun part has been all the engagement that I have met on my way. Guess we all can earn a lot of knowledge from a good discussion.
So? Whats up with this blog thing? Thats a really good question. My social media streams are usually focused at news and G+ is just old fashioned social fun, with memes and sharing the free thought. But, hopefully, there is more to this than just memes and senseless drivel about this and that. I actually from time to time try to write something that makes sense and could be useful to others. I would both keep those more serious articles like an archive here as well as presenting longer pieces for those that are interested.
Only thing I can promise; you will meet me close up and personal, and I will engage with those engaging with me.